Budget Beauty Buys: Lips

I’m a huge fan of a statement lip colour against other natural (i.e. none) makeup for general day to day wear. It is very quick and easy, looks great, and as long as you get the shade right, extremely wearable for everyone. I can’t help you find the right shade for your colouring, but I can recommend the products I love.

First up, you need to take care of your lips. I recommend a good scrub of them a couple of times a week to get rid of dead skin. My preferred method is a toothbrush, but Libby has a recipe for a wonderful homemade scrub. I’d love a scrub in a tube format (run on and wipe off without getting messy) so would welcome any suggestions! Then you should layer up with a decent balm at least once a day. I like to put on an extra thick coat before bed (and before I shower/bath) and also a light coat as soon as I wake up. In the past I have been a big fan of Vaseline, but since reading a little more into ingredients, I’ve tried to go for something natural, which allows moisture in and out rather than acting as a barrier. I also prefer tube applications, and so my current favourite is Dr Organic’s Pomegranate offering;

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I find this lip balm to be lovely and moisturising – it does have a bit of a wiff of ‘lip balm’ about it but not as obvious as some of the ones I have previously tried (I’m looking at you, Nivea!). One thing I love about it is that is it ever so slightly tinted, without being too glossy, so it gives a lovely sheen to the lips. You can buy this for £3.25 in Holland & Barratt, but they quite often have excellent sales and deals.

Now onto the far more important and interesting bit – colour time!

I have been a long time user of The Body Shop’s Lip and Cheek Stain in Rose Pink. I find it is a really good shade on my skin, is easy to blend out on the cheeks, and gives the lips a nice hint of colour that doesn’t come off easily. It lasts a long time too – I have had a tube for two years, and it is still going strong (I did, however, repurchase over summer, leaving the emptier one at home). There is only one problem, and that is leakage. It really isn’t a bag friendly option!

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As you can see, the colour looks extremely bright in the tube and on the applicator. It IS bright, but it looks natural on my pale skin when blended well, and it definitely suits my lips. I don’t find this formula drying either, though I wish it would last everso slightly longer seeing as I can’t carry it around. This stain is £10, but it lasts such a long time that I personally see it as a massive bargain!

Because of the lack of portability of the lip stain, I spent summer trying to locate a slightly neater version, perhaps a highly pigmented balm. I failed on the balm front, but I’ve definitely found something that (kind of) means I can carry a favourite lip colour around. Tony Moly is a makeup company that ships from Korea, and from what I have read sells some pretty good quality products at some pretty amazing prices. When I found that they sold a product that seemed perfect for me, I couldn’t help but ordering. I first read about it on Makeup Savvy, and ordered pretty much immediately. At roughly £3.70 from Ebay, it would have been a crime not too, right?!

My package too FOREVER to get here. Well about 3-4 weeks, definitely within the time stated, but bear the long time in mind if you are ordering for Christmas. Like, order now! When it did arrive it was ridiculously well packaged in lots of bubble wrap (huge bonus points – I doubt anything will ever arrive damaged!) and included a cute note.

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And some free samples – a fragrence and a BB cream. I’m on a bit of a foundation ban due to some pesky spots, but I will definitely be trying this soon!

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Now onto the actual product! The packaging is really, really impressive. It looks stylish, feels well made, and in general I was just really surprised at the quality for the price. I am definitely not a snob when it comes to makeup, but I know too well that cheaper makeup packaging often means cheap and (to put it bluntly) shoddy packaging.

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The colour is a huge pop – very similar (virtually identical in fact) to my favourite Body Shop stain.

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The texture inside is quite hard and gel-like (reminds me of Vaseline on a cold day), but easy to apply to the lips. It is quite sticky, and definitely more of a gloss than a stain. And the colour pay-off is pretty damn impressive – far more pigmented that Body Shop!

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In fact, the pigmentation is a teeny bit of a problem. It stays on the lips for hours, to the point where last night I had to remove it before bed. But it also stays on your finger. It doesn’t budge with soap, leading to a bright pink finger…so definitely not as portable as I hoped. I’m planning on purchasing a mini lip brush for carrying around, but I reckon this is definitely going to become a staple in my makeup bag – its perfect for travelling too!

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This product has definitely opened up my eyes to buying ‘new’ and ‘different’ foreign makeup brands – it’s definitely something I’ll be doing again!

Whilst I highly recommend all of the products discussed on this page, and I truly believe they will be favourites of mine for a long time, I also have put this little treat on my Christmas list. I’d definitely not a 1D fan, but the shade just seems so perfect for Christmas. As a little hint, my birthday is at the beginning of December…


Does anyone have any recommended lip products? Do you buy foreign make-up brands?